YMCA Brac camp showcases Cayman culture

| 21/08/2017
CNS Local Life

Sheldon Scottt teaches campers how to make a calavan, or bird catcher

(CNS Local Life): More than 30 kids in Cayman Brac spent two weeks immersed in history and culture at a camp organised by the YMCA in partnership with Brac native Simone Scott. The Cayman Brac Culture Camp took place from 31 July to 11 August at the Heritage House, and included such activities as fishing, heritage arts, traditional games, song and dance, and scavenger hunts.

During the first week, the campers were introduced to the children’s book Dragon of Nani Cave, written by Elaine Powers and read to the kids by the Brac’s own storyteller Quincy Brown, which chronicles the adventures of the curly-tail lizards of Cayman Brac. Other activities included a hands-on lesson about digital book illustration using iPads and iPhones, a beach clean-up for trash and treasure, coral decoration and jewellery making, field trips to the bat cave and the mangroves, getting up close and personal with some turtle hatchlings and learning Cayman folklore and songs.

“The Cayman Islands has just published its Culture and Heritage Policy which further highlights how important it is for our children to be taught about our heritage,” said Scott. “Today’s Caymanian culture has been heavily influenced by other cultures so there is more of a focus on conservation and the environment which is why we decided to concentrate on those topics in our first week.

“However, the heritage of our forefathers is still very important for both Caymanians and visitors alike, so we spent a lot of time in our second week exploring various aspects of the traditional Cayman culture.”

With the exception of the first day of camp, no electronic devices were allowed on site for the rest of the time. The second week was spent learning about traditional Caymanian homes; how to boil fever grass and mint bush tea; thatch plaiting; drawing; rope laying; handline fishing; making tamarind juice, fritters and coconut ice cream; taking a farm tour; and walking the bluff trail.

“The Y Cayman Islands was pleased to offer this opportunity to our children to learn more about the rich history and culture of the Cayman Islands,” said Jenny Stuesser, YMCA programme coordinator. “It is only by teaching these traditions and telling these stories to this generation that we will be able to preserve them for the next, and we know from the feedback we have received that the campers enjoyed learning about their country and what makes Cayman so unique.”

Tags: , , ,

Category: Culture

Comments (1)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Anonymous says:

    We really enjoyed seeing the children learning handline fishing while we were at Scott’s Dock. And thank you for letting us stop in and visit all of you at the Heritage House during our visit. We learned so much and your hospitality will stay with us always. – Wilson family / U.S.